Weekly news round-up: Your guide to what’s happened this week in the media, entertainment and technology industry.

Apple announced TV+ streaming service 
Jennifer Aniston, Steven Spielberg and Oprah Winfrey were among those who took to the stage at Apple’s headquarters to reveal their involvement in TV projects commissioned by the tech giant on Monday. Apple announced it will push into original content for its new TV streaming service expected to launch Autumn this year, reported the BBC. It also announced it will launch a credit card, gaming portal and interactive news app. 

Microsoft CEO revamps business model
Satya Nadella chief executive of Microsoft admitted changing the organisation’s business model and culture is more difficult than its evolving technology changes. According to The Drum, it has shifted its focus from an operating systems model to cloud and software-as-a-service (SaaS) products which saw stock prices triple between 2014 and 2018. Speaking during the Adobe Summit this week in Las Vegas, the brand hit an existential crisis at the end of the 1990s and Nadella said its next mission is to empower every person and organisation.

Indian Premier League draws 219m viewers 
Star India has celebrated a rise of 13% of audience ratings for the opening weekend of the Indian Premier League (IPL) 2019 with 219 million TV viewers, according to Rapid TV News. Its growth has been attributed to the regionalisation strategy with over 100 experts from around the globe providing commentary and analysis.  

Alibaba acquires VR startup 
Israeli startup Infinity Augmented Reality has been acquired by Alibaba to continue its collaboration in AR, computer vision and intelligence projects. According to Tech Crunch, the startup enables AR integration across industries to integrate AR into its apps. Alibaba’s DAMO Academy is investing $15 billion for research and development with the aim of serving two billion customers and creating 100 million jobs by 2036. 

EU parliament passes copyright reform
European Parliament members voted on Tuesday to back a “controversial” reform of the EU’s copyright rules, according to the Business Review activists claim it opposes freedom of speech for tech giants including Google News and Facebook. Despite more than five million people signing a petition to oppose the rules to block content, MEPs majority voted in favour and Member States will have two years to implement the rules if formalised. 

EU regulators tighten political FB ads
Ahead of the European Union (EU) legislative election this May, Facebook has toughened its rules on political advertising under pressure from regulators. According to Reuters, the social media influence is to be safeguarded to enable local authorised advertisers to run political issued adverts. Facebook is set to roll out the ad transparency regulations globally in June, Facebook announced it is also adding new features and information to its ad archive. 

Pay-TV Forum expands for 2019
A global research programme established in 2016 will expand its research this year to explore the challenges facing pay-TV service providers and content owners. Advanced Television reported the partnership between Nagra and MTM will focus on OTT growth, next-generation aggregation, data and analytics within the pay-TV transformation ecosystem. The programme will run from March to September with a final report launched at IBC in September. 

Inmarsat confirms takeover rumours 
British satellite communications company Inmarsat has confirmed rumours regarding its acquisition with an “offer on the table,” according to Telecoms. It will give shareholders $3.4 billion and take the firm into private equity. The Consortium released a statement: “Our planned ownership will enable this innovative British company to fulfil its ambitions to become a global leader in next-generation satellite communications.”